For a while now, I’ve been developing a course covering the book of Acts. The goal of the class is to provide lessons and inspiration for missionaries drawn from examples in the work of the Holy Spirit and the apostles in the 1st Century. As I’ve been working on this course, God has been directing me and reminding me of the overwhelming significance of our perspective on Ministry and whose Ministry it is that we undertake. It really is the work of the Holy Spirit. We minister, we act, we witness, but it is the Holy Spirit who changes hearts.
In the introduction to the book of Acts, you can see the Holy Spirit directly at work in Jesus’ life. And it’s the Holy Spirit that is promised to support the work of the apostles as they do the amazing things that take place in the account of Acts. The Holy Spirit is the Guide, the Power, the Comforter, and the Encourager. In order to keep a proper perspective when considering my role in relation to the Holy Spirit’s, it’s critical to continue seeking out direction from Him as well as communing and communicating with God: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. I must constantly, through prayer and meditation, spend time in God’s Word. These are the things that keep me from becoming enamored with my work, level-headed and centered. These are the things that make the most influential differences in Ministry.
I’ve heard it said many times before, and I’m sure that you have too, that the statistics are catastrophically horrible for the amount of time the average person in full-time Ministry spends in prayer. What drives this neglect? Why have we as a people become so convinced in our minds that we can accomplish more if we simply put our noses to the grindstone and work. work. work? As Christians, when has this ever increased “productivity”? Since when was “productivity” even the goal?
We have to stop, listen, and express our needs, desires, hopes, and aspirations to God in prayer. We need to stop long enough to hear Him answer back. The more we spend that time with Him, the more we develop in our spirit. It is the Spirit within us that is able to hear from the Spirit of God. And the more we commune with God in prayer, the more we are able to recognize, in the moment, when God is directing us down a particular path. We are able to hear His voice and recognize it because we’ve developed strength and trust in the Spirit within us.
So let us pray more. Let us seek the Holy Spirit’s guidance more. And let us see how this affects the way that we go about our Ministry and the fruit that is brought forth.